Monday, April 7, 2008

Florida Training Camp: Part Dos

I can't remember where I left off in the last post. But, I'm sure I covered our eventful travel to Florida and our first couple days on the bike. Now, it's time for a little story about the Chavez brothers.

In the town of San Antonia, FL, the traditional Wed. ride occurs much like it does from Exeter Cycles. Because we're gluttons for pain, RKelly and I decided it would be an excellent idea to leave our posh rental house at 5am in an effort to put in some hard miles with the local riders. As we woudl soon find out, HARD does not even describe the ride we would encounter.

The parking lot was mostly empty save a few older guys sporting jerseys worn by their ProTour heroes. Milram and Liquigas team kits were like Charlotte Hornet Starter jackets on this morning. This did NOT look like the ride we anticipated. Regardless, we were awake and an hour from "home", so we waited for the ride.

"Uh, it's the Chavez Brothers..."

At the time, the mention of Chavez Brothers raised my pulse as much as someone exlaiming, "It's a red fire hydrant!". Sure, the two dudes were sporting similar team kits. But, Ryan and I were too. Big deal.

A half hour later, I realized the big deal as my bike propelled along the back roads of Florida at over 35mph. Moments earlier, I had ramped up the group's pace. As if it were a green light in a drag race, the Chavez Brothers came past me and turned on the afterburners. Through the snot web covering my face, I saw my HR monitor flashing. The BPM were no longer visible. Instead, it was a skull and cross bones warning my nearing demise. Danny and Joel Chavez were, with each pedal stroke, tearing my legs from my body. If it weren't for my ignornace of the local roads, I would have aimed my bike for the nearest patch of grass and taken ten minutes to stuff my lungs back in my chest. Ignornace is not bliss, my friends. Ignornance is suffering for 1.5 hours because you might otherwise not find your way back to the team van.

Upon reaching the finish sprint (there were no cameras or officials mind you), the group settled to a manageable speed. The Floridians, now capable of breathing normally, took an interest in us two Northerners and disclosed stories of the legendary Chavez Brothers. Apparently, they are the best cyclists and Florida and one was even in the top 10 at Superweek 2007. Furthermore, there is nothing they like more than a couple new riders, aka Fresh Meat or Balls of Yarn, to toy with on their Wed. training rides. Go figure. That evening, my sleep was continually interrupted by dreams of the Chavez Brothers making my cry at the upcoming Webster-Roubaix.

Oh, did I mention they both rode 55 tooth big rings?? Animals.

No comments: